Readers after LASIK
Reading Glasses After LASIK

Does LASIK wear off?

It’s something we hear weekly: “I had LASIK years ago, but now I need reading glasses.” Many people think their LASIK has worn off (it hasn’t), or that something unusual is happening (it’s probably not).

If you have had LASIK or an earlier version such as PRK in the past, the changes made in your cornea, located in the front of your eye, are permanent. The problem is likely caused by natural and normal changes in the lens, located in the back of your eye.

“Over 40 vision,” or presbyopia, affects everyone eventually, even those of us who have enjoyed the benefits of LASIK in the past. When this happens, our near vision becomes blurry and trying to discern details in low light, like while driving at night, can be frustrating.

But here’s a cool fact: You don’t have to live with reading glasses or poor night vision. Thanks to the beauty of science and technology (and a lot of scientists working late nights in the office), there are now treatments that solve over-40 vision problems—even if you have had LASIK.

For starters, there’s Refractive Lens Exchange, or RLE. This is a good treatment option for many people because, on top of providing crisp, clear vision, it also prevents cataracts—something every one of us eventually must deal with eventually.

RLE involves exactly what it says: your aging lens, which isn’t as flexible or clear as it once was, is exchanged with a biocompatible engineered lens that gives you back the vision you likely had in your early 30s. Of course, it’s not for everyone, but it’s a great solution for a lot of people. Dr. Brinton can tell you if it’s a good option for you following a comprehensive Brinton Vision Ocular Analysis.

Another type of treatment perfect for a lot of people are corneal inlays. These are tiny, thin implants placed in the cornea of one eye to give you the focus you need to read or see close up. They give you a fancy superpower called blended vision, which means that both eyes can still see fine far away, but one eye will provide the near and night vision you’re missing. This is different, and an improvement from monovision, when one eye sees distantly and the other sees close up.

Right now, there are two FDA-approved corneal inlays available: Kamra Inlay and Raindrop, with a third, called Presbia, on the way. All three have been used successfully in Europe and Japan for years. Raindrop has been used successfully in the United States, although the company that makes the lenses is no longer operating as of late 2018.

So the long and short of it is that, no, you don’t have to fumble with reading glasses, even if you have had LASIK in the past. There are solutions available, but the key is in visiting a St. Louis LASIK surgeon who does more than just LASIK and who has an outstanding record of safely, effectively providing top-notch treatment.

To find out if you can ditch the readers, contact Brinton Vision at 314.375.2020, or schedule an appointment online by clicking here.